More than three years after Clipse released their Neptunes-produced, chart-storming debut album, the Virginia rap duo brothers Pusha T and Malice are finally set to drop a follow-up, Hell Hath No Fury, in 2006. Problems with the Sony-BMG merger are to blame for the delay, claims Pusha, but in an online-only interview with Entertainment Weekly's Ryan Dombal, he explains why the new disc may prove worth the wait.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How is Hell Hath No Fury different from your first album, Lord Willin'?
PUSHA T We're older. We've grown. We didn't get stagnant after doing this whole hiatus. Rap is getting really bad right now; nobody's really rapping no more. I don't think we do anything different from anybody else, but I do think we do it better just the level of creativity. It's the difference between somebody saying, ''I'll shoot you, I'll bang you, I'll cut you,'' versus the fundamental elements of rap, like metaphors and similes, painting pictures and connecting the dots.
How long have you been recording the new album?
The album was originally done a while ago and then, as time went on, we created more songs. The records that were cut off initially from the original Hell Hath No Fury were more lighthearted, with a girl singing on the hook, or maybe even a girl in the record. But that's where we were in '03, '04. Now, the title Hell Hath No Fury is so much more relevant because we're so angry.
Did the Neptunes produce every song on the album?
Yes we have a point to prove. It's a Clipse-Neptunes calculated science project. I feel like the people are gonna be so shocked to know they produced this, because the records take them so far out of their element. I think we really push those guys to the limit everybody else comes up to them and says, ''Hey, I want 'Drop It Like It It's Hot,''' or ''Sing on the hook for me,'' or ''Give me one of them joints with the congos or bongos or whatever the hell.'' When they work with us, we're not taking it if it ain't something crazy out of the box.
Talk about some of the tracks on Hell Hath No Fury.
There's a track called ''Chinese New Year'' that some a--hole leaked [laughs]. I don't know who leaked it. So annoying! It's probably one of the hardest records; it would never make the airwaves it's too violent. It's one of those sleeper great records.
We have a single planned right now called ''Mr. Me Too'' and it's a total disruption of radio. The concept is that a lot of guys have cut and pasted what they like about the Clipse and tried to add it on to their own persona. And there are a lot of guys who have clipped a lot of different things about what the Neptunes have done musically. There are a lot of people who claim to have been trendsetters in certain arenas and whatever the case may be knowing damn well where they got it from. It's a dedication.
There's another hard record called ''I'm So Obnoxious.'' It's basically just an explanation of how we know that a lot of s--- we do ain't good, but it's just the allure of the things that we lust [after] that makes us do it. Like, ''Mom, I'm sorry, I'm so obnoxious.''
Are there any guests on the album outside of your crew?
No, never. And if they do come on, it will not be a rapper. It'll be a vocalist or someone of that nature. This is showcase time.
How many songs are going to be on the CD?
I just counted yesterday with [Neptunes producer] Pharrell; right now we have 12 joints that we're happy with. I want to go back in and do 4 more records, but Pharrell fights me on that. He hates long albums. But I feel like [the delay] cheated my fans.